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Thursday, December 29, 2011

A New Year, New Living; beyond everyday...

I've done it again! Surprised myself, that is- by coming up with this post- when I had intended to abstain from posting on New Year Resolutions, what with the pointless messages (since who has ever fulfilled their resolutions?) and such a busy schedule that I thought I wouldn't get the time to write anyway. I had thought I'll re-post my last year's piece on New Year Resolutions (I resolve to...), however useless it might be! But then, as I unfolded this Saturday's (Dec 24th) issue of Mint Lounge (which I really enjoy reading. That's a different matter I subscribed to Mint to increase my economic and business related knowledge of which I just read the headlines :P), I was hooked to the cover story! It was on how we can make 2012, or our life for that matter, last longer, by engaging in activities that are fulfilling and that will make memories worth cherishing! That was what the whole paper was about. It spanned 14 whole pages, but I read it anyway, slowly, carefully, to take everything in.

Anyway, the point is, I was SO influenced by the things they said, I couldn't help jotting stuff down in my diary and thought it would be even better if I could arrange it into a blog-post! So here are a few points I think are worth trying. Not in a single year people! That wouldn't even be possible, but in our lifetime. These are really simple things, that can make us grow internally, love infinitely and live fulfillingly (I know that is no word, but it had to rhyme!). And yeah, if you aren't capable of reading really long articles, you better stop now :P

1. Mending cracks with a friend
A friend who was with you in Class 1, or someone you loved but lost contact with, over your busy lives and long time periods? It would be so emotionally fulfilling to see them again, to be able to talk to them about the lovely moments we shared. This is something definitely worth trying. They're all in our Facebook friend list, why not give them a visit too? :) I can think of a few names I would love to see again, let's see how this works out!

2. Cut the fast food
Now THAT's gonna be difficult! In these times of pre-packaged foods, what we consume is mostly inorganic and preserved. But, apart from health reasons, we can enjoy our food better when we've taken out hours and our energies to create something (like spices). Though I'm not fond of cooking, I guess it would be worth a try.

3. Freewheeling!

One of my favorite ideas! It says 'ditch the car, get a bicycle'. You may wonder if I'm mad, preferring a bicycle over a car, but yes! I have always loved bicycles and now I guess, it would be quite cool if I could move around in one. For one, I could save on petrol, my pocket money and the environment and two, I would get some exercise! (Dad, I know you'll be reading this! See the hidden request? ;) )

4. Puzzling!
Having to solve a really big jigsaw puzzle, one that could take you months to complete, having the family to sit and work on it once in a while. That sounds fun! We could preserve the puzzle as a sweet memoir, one that would make us remember the time we spent on putting it together. How about a family photo puzzle? :) There were mentioned a couple of websites that could help create puzzles for us.  

5. Creating your own signature scent!

This is something I'm definitely going to try. The recipe for making your own perfume is so simple! We just need some essential oils, base oil, alcohol ad distilled water, along with some creativity and personal taste! It's all about mixing stuff together, adding more of what you like to get your own scent. That would mean visiting the small lanes of old Delhi to reach apothecaries that stock the ingredients. A really simple recipe, that's going to be fun to try. :)

6. Play with Clay
Clay pots are something we made in Art class in school, maybe just once. The uneven surface, the funny shapes and the clay scent, it was all that we enjoyed at that time. But why not now, too? Wouldn't it give us so much pleasure to be able to have our hands around the clay, watching with marvel the shapes we can create? There's a Delhi Blue Pottery Trust that offers a six month course in pottery, and the course fee isn't even exorbitant! If I'm able to get admitted to a good college and have the valuable resource, time, in my hands, I'm definitely going for it. If not now, some other time for sure. It's been added to my list!

7. Going back to the Pen
I am such a hypocrite! Here I am, typing down these words with so much gusto and talking about how we should not let go of the pen. But still, I will try, since these words from the paper were quite influencing- " The written word, as a creative art, was once about individuality of expression. A writer was defined by the kind of pen he used". These words could also be quite depressing for someone like me, who hasn't written an essay with a pen (apart from exams of course!). Even notes in college are photocopies from different books and the subjects too boring to make your own notes. No wonder I'm the only one who finds my handwriting legible. :/ And to think there was a time when I did nothing apart from writing (with pencils, I mean) and drawing. There was a different kind of satisfaction, one that I'm going to renew now. :) 
(anyone volunteer to be my typist??? I'm obviously not going to write down the same things twice!)

8. Back to your Mother Tongue
We've all been raised up to learn English- the most important of all languages, if we don't want to make a fool of ourselves as and when we grow up (though that's a different matter I've discovered now it really doesn't make much difference. You could excel in any language, just be dedicated to your job, and life). And an even different matter that I have always loved English, making faces when I had to learn Hindi at school. But isn't it true that you're kind of recognized by your own culture and regional language too? I remember getting Punjabi-learning books when I was young (and hadn't seen the real world and had too much enthusiasm), but I wasn't dedicated. It wasn't something I had to excel at to get good marks (Don't blame me for this outlook! Point your fingers to the education system here!), hence I still can't read in Punjabi (here goes my reputation :/). But I think I would like to go back to it, and I think you should, too. :) (not to Punjabi, confused people, but to whatever language is your Mother Tongue- Urdu, Malayalam, Tamil, Asamese, whatever!)

9. Climb up rocks..
Considering I always get so excited I could cry, at the prospect of adventure sports, this is one point I would want to work on like crazy! Rock climbing! Forget all the health and body, stamina blah blah reasons they give, I just know I would love to do that, and that's it! (Thank you Mint, for giving names of relevant clubs in Delhi). And I loved this line from the paper- "Climbing is a pensive, personal and challenging sport. The ground is our comfort zone, we are safe on it, and so to take just the first step up a wall, even if roped, is to walk past fear". :)

10. Wildlife Photography
I can say nothing on it except that you probably already know I've been crying out in a hoarse voice since the last two years, begging my parents to take me to some wildlife park, but I still haven't been to any and I'm still crying over it. Not that I am not independent, but not old enough to go on my own (wellll, maybe :P). 2012, Please! Let you be the year I FINALLY get to see the mystical forces of nature and wildlife and of course, to photograph them. ;) Away from city life, into a jungle. Really worth a try! (My Mom thinks I'm mad for thinking like this, but I don't think so. I know we have a 'real' and 'practical' life to live, but we can surely give one day to some senseless desire, that is always much more fulfilling).

11. Plant. Bonsai.
Before I read this, the only thing that came into my mind at the mention of the word "Bonsai" was the extraordinarily yummy pickles made from Bonsai-oranges and gifted to us by Mom's friend's Mom! But the idea that I could have one such plant in my own home is quite interesting. It doesn't even require much space and to see something grow at your own hands, and the final result of so much perseverance, the idea is surely  inviting. :) 

12. Give a gift that lasts...
It's so tough to think of gifts to give to our friends, relatives and other people you want to present gifts (in some cases you actually don't WANT to, then this point can be ignored). One such idea here, I think, is genius! Find out what the person is really interested in (gardening, photography, art!) and gift them a yearly subscription of a magazine related to their field of interest and one that's not easily available on the stands. That way, the person won't only think of the occasion on which you gifted them, but also of you. (The italicized lines are from the paper. I'm not a plagiarist, just so you know). And this is in no way, my indirect manner of giving you ideas of what you can gift me. I'm not that far gone. :P

13. Build a family tree...
This can be quite challenging, what with the enthusiasm in the family to extend the family as far as possible, spreading across the whole planet! But it would be so much fun too, visiting relatives you haven't seen in months (or years!), and maybe even discovering that the weird guy in your chacha's neighborhood is actually your dad's brother's wife's second cousin! A website, could be of help. I want to try this out! That would take a really long time, considering the huge number of cousins of cousins I have, but if I'm successful, I could have my own huge family tree painting in the living room (I get such weird ideas from fiction. Blame Harry Potter and Sirius Black in this case).

14. Visit a museum a month
Even this is something I've been bawling over. But now I think I am capable of going on my own. I still haven't even seen the National Museum in my own city, just because no one bothers to accompany me! Mom, please don't think it's a direct threat (if at all you will read this), but I'll start off on my own if you don't come with me! Museums can be a wonderful source of knowledge and learning. It's so much better to learn history and about landmark events through art.

15. Breathe!
Usually I'm not a yoga type of a person but I sure am concerned about my health and living peacefully. This one talked about how our breaths actually control our life. I don't have much to say except I'm following this from now on. An excerpt from the paper- "In Sept, WHO reported that with rapid industrialization, India is one of the worst affected by air pollution and an epicenter for lung diseases. Our age is one of short, sharp, half-lung breaths. No wonder, we are so angry all the time. Breathing is the metronome to your day. To control breath is to control life itself. To realign life, begin with one, full, deep, clear inhalation. Breathe, now."

There were 50 such points, of which these 15 are ones I'm definitely gonna give a shot! Apart from these, I listed down a few of my own
- Learn Geography: I admit I'm not so good at it, and it's such a shame considering the fact that I would love to move around the world and discover new places.. Work on it, work on it!

- Record : My scrap-file still hasn't been justified, scraps from papers are still lying around pointlessly. About time I file them properly!

- Learn a new language: Something I've been trying to do since the last two years and almost did this year, but backed out at the last minute. 

- Concentrate: Whatever I will do, I will give my full concentration to it, to be able to learn something valuable. Multi-tasking has its side effects, one of which includes lack of concentration. Take things one at a time. :)

Really, there are such wonderful things, waiting to be explored, and here we are, scraping off the stale days all the time. These things will make memories, and will mark the time we did them, thus making and marking our years, and subsequently, our life. :)

Of course, all this isn't possible in a single year, and these aren't even my resolutions, but things I discovered must be undertaken in our life. These are so simple, so easy and really, just so small, but the happiness and fulfillment they have the power to give us, is too overpowering. I will try these out, will you? :)
Wishing everyone a Very Happy New Year and a life full of enjoyment and smiles. :)
Love, Spread Love, Live. :)

Friday, December 16, 2011

A completely CRAZY day with friends!!!

The alarm clock buzzed the soft, soothing tune (another reason why I always end up being sleepy than ever!) and I carelessly hit the snooze button (the obvious first step). I have no clue if it buzzed again, but I got up with a headache and saw the time. It was 11.53am! Aneesha and Richa (two of my cool buddies) were supposed to reach my place at 12! Not that I expected them to be on time, but still. I should at least have brushed my teeth till then! :P

Anyway, like normal Indian people, they reached an hour late, laughing and smiling and I knew it was a perfect day for some much needed post-exam fun! We chatted and gossiped and laughed and discussed and argued, all while munching chips and gulping down coke. They had even got a couple of scrumptious pastries and surprised me by presenting two beautiful and lovely handmade cards and a small gift! It was apparently my belated birthday celebration! (Isn't the bee just so cute? :D)


We are the kind of friends who like to throw away 'formalities' into a large smelly trash bin! We wanted to have fun, and after rummaging in some cupboards, I got out a few old games. The boxes were dirty but we didn't mind a single bit. We rejected chess (not so much fun), the business game (as if we didn't have enough of the business stuff already), tambola (three people wouldn't be much fun for it), speller (reciting the spelling of Czechoslovakia? Nope!) and finally settled on Hangman! Something we played with a million years ago! It was actually fun though, creating names with those plastic pieces, arguing over the score, guessing stupid stuff and clicking pictures (obviously!). 
Hangman, while we played. :)

That was when we realized that we were feeling ravenous. We decided to order in from Dominos. I really don't like talking over the phone with strangers (Thank God for that. It means I wouldn't ever have to resort to working in a call center. Not that I want to, no way!) so Aneesha was the one who called the outlet and ordered two medium pizzas. They already had our home address and number on records, since we frequently order from there. As soon as she disconnected the line and we saw each other, some kind of weird understanding passed, and the three of us immediately decided we don't want two pizzas and in less than a minute, Aneesha called them back and requested for a change.

However, to our surprise, the guy refused! He curtly told us that the order's ready and can't be changed. Hello? We placed the order less than a minute ago! How can it be ready? I took the cell from Aneesha and said, "Hello? Are you going to change the order or not?" (Yeah, I felt very bond-like). He said No, it can't be changed. That flared up the anger in me and I asked him to cancel the order. "We don't want anything from you", I blew into the tiny cell phone. The (shamelessly rude) guy said, "Then we won't accept any orders from you again". "Fine", I yelled and hung up!

We laughed at the idiocity of it all, but we wanted the pizzas! We were hungry, and so much in the mood for pizza that we couldn't let it go! Richa then called from her cell, and like the idiots that we are, we placed the same (changed) order and of course, the guy got suspicious and when we gave the address (which of course, was the same), he refused! That was SO unfair! I mean, just for asking for a change in the order? Dad would obviously take care of it though, I thought to myself, but we wanted the pizzas! We decided to actually visit the outlet, the same one, and gorge on pizzas there! Yes, we are that far gone! But then, that's what makes us crazy. ;) 

We decided to visit the park for the photo session (they wanted their pictures clicked by me! OK, by the camera, which is really good, but still, I was supposed to click, right? I hadn't even experimented with portraits photography, so I wasn't sure I would be able to make them happy). We were totally in the mood to have fun. For once, I didn't feel awkward as I squatted on the ground, to click their pictures from different angles (it was because I am now much more confident, okay? And not because there wasn't a single other soul there, except for a funny looking aunty who stared inappropriately long at us every time she walked past, and of course, some dogs who were basking in the sun). 
 On the slide before the dogs barked!

They posed on different swings and I clicked. Once they were on top of a short slide and I was clicking, when I heard the many barks of the dogs! They were somehow disturbed and chasing each other. I looked around to see Richa's eyes wide with fear. She screamed to God for help (hahahahhaa) and immediately slid down the slide, while I struggled to get out of her way (not much success though, the side of her head hit my camera, which shut off on it's own!). We went crazy laughing out at the situation, while Richa tried to give an explanation. (she said dogs can climb up slides! As if the dogs would leave me, who was on the ground, and go for them, on top of swings! LOL!). We anyway carried on with the session for a while, before Richa completely freaked out when she saw the time! We still had to go to Dominos and she had her tuition class too. (Imagine, tuition in college!). But the photo session made me realize that I CAN click good portraits! We loved the pictures!

Cute pictures, right? :)

We hurried out to find a rickshaw to take us to PVR, a five minute thingy from my place. The rickshaw puller demanded more than necessary, and I wasn't going to take in more unfair stuff than what I already had endured with the pizza guy. We refused to take it and started looking for another one when a frantic dog came rushing at us. Reflexes made both, Aneesha and Richa jump into the rickshaw! I stood there, trying to shield myself from the dog, which I realized was the one that roams around in our neighborhood and whose life I had once saved. Well, kind of. It wouldn't bite me, if it had any manners. I refused to get on the rickshaw because the puller was smirking! At me, at my friends, at the situation! How dare he? He thought we couldn't do without him, did he? I refused to get on it, so both of them got down as well. (Quite some show we put up there). That's what Ego does. It's a very strange, weird and dangerous thing.

We started walking in the hope that we'll find another one, with Richa walking speedily in front of us (wow. She was really serious about her tuition class). However, we did not find anything as we continued walking and soon decided to walk the rest of the length, since now we were so close it would have been stupid if we took a rickshaw! High on adrenalin, laughing and walking fast, we soon reached the doors to Dominos. Smirking, we got in and innocently looked up the menu. Ordering pizza, pasta, coke and chicken wings (that looked extraordinarily yummy from the picture on the menu), we sat down to wait. While our order was being processed somewhere inside the kitchen, we took pictures and wondered who could possibly be the guy who blacklisted my address. We spied on the people who picked up calls for home delivery and soon enough, a guy with spectacles matched our description. He was curt and looked like a strict school teacher. The no-nonsense types. We looked at the name plate and remembered it, in case it came up in the future, I would know.
(That's me, with Aneesha and Richa respectively) 

Our food arrived and we hungrily grabbed it, not bothering with any formalities (like, "you have it first", du-uh!). The chicken wings didn't look as tasty as they did on the menu. We asked them if it was the same thing. It was the strict guy that answered and he offered to get it a little more baked. We agreed and then, it wasn't so bad after all. We finished everything, too full to even move, but we couldn't possibly sit there all day. Or night. Whatever. We left the place but I had a suspicious feeling that they knew. Of course they would, we gave them the same number we used to call them, I realized with a jolt. But whatever, what could they do?

We said our goodbyes and I reached home, immensely satisfied and feeling that intense happiness you only sometimes get when you're really feeling exhilarated! When it's your heart that's happy and pumping like there's no better thing. (well, what else could a heart do anyway?). It wasn't over though. I switched on the laptop and filed a complaint, requesting them to remove our address from the blacklist. Soon enough, Dad got a call and the chief said he'll make sure nothing like that happens again. Ha! Take that you 'no-nonsense' man! :P

It was fun while I transferred the pictures into the laptop and e-mailed them to Aneesha and Richa. I uploaded some on Facebook (of course!) and we again re-lived the moments online! It was an amazing day. It may sound absolutely crazy or totally boring to you, but it was certainly much more to me. We had so much fun, after such a long time. Aneesha and Richa, I hope we always stay such friends, loving each other and continuing carrying out crazy ideas, no matter how old we get. :)

Friday, December 9, 2011

Just a simple thought....

I have no clue what I'm supposed to call this feeling, this inner desire to just start typing down here, despite the fact that I have an exam after exactly 43 hours and I still haven't picked up the book to revise (it's lying by my side, looking SO innocent but so not tempting!). Funny how everything seems like an unexplored territory during exams and you can't help thinking about things you otherwise won't, during 'normal' days. For instance, I love making (and experimenting) different kinds of teas during exam days, which is quite funny because I'm just averse to the idea of having anything to do with cooking. And kitchen. I prefer being the consumer. Always. :P

Anyway, just a little while ago (when I had the book in my hands) random thoughts flowed into my small head and the need to put some of them down was too overpowering, because well, it's a small head and needs to be de-cluttered so that some of the stuff that would be useful in the exam could make it's way in. Oh God! This is what exams can do to my sense of humor! 

I was wondering why people choose to live such complicated lives. I'm not talking about the thousand or so relationships everyone has, totally twisted, but just about simpler things in life. Like going out for some leisure time and when they return, they're not really happy because they got 'only' two t-shirts? C'mon people! You just got two brand new tees, that too on impulse, can't you be happy about it, instead of going, "I think I got the wrong color"?  

Or worrying too much about what other people might be thinking about them. Why do they worry at all? Do those 'other' people even matter? Think like this- those who matter are the people who love you unconditionally. Even if you spill over a drop of soup or have your shoes covered with mud or waste, they're not suddenly going to hate you for it. Besides, people only think of you as you think of yourself. It's simply your choice to either make a sorry face and just stand there admitting you forgot the lines in the play, or instinctively cooking something up and sprouting with confidence, ending up as a star!!!

Another thing is having too much on your plate but still continuing dropping dollops of workload, side by side trying to ensure the stuff doesn't start leaking off the plate. You bet it will. Eventually. Can't we just do one thing at a time? Slowly, gradually, understanding and enjoying it completely before we move on to the next? But I guess for some people it isn't even a choice anymore. It's a lifestyle, especially if you are a kid. I've seen kids under ten years of age going to school, dance class, music lessons, abacus, some evening sport club- all in a SINGLE day!!! What's up with the parents anyway? I'm glad a lived a cool life as a kid, inventing my own games, choosing my own friends and having fun in my own way!

Anddd the thing that's digging into my head since a long time is- why do people choose to smack their heads, literally churn out their brains and molest the keypad by typing-deleting-typing-deleting-typing out words that are just so hard? I mean, it's great to have a good vocab and even greater if you use it into your language or into your articles easily; but when you actually chew off your fingernails trying to think of fancy words to include into your text, is it okay? I might be hauled off by the ethical police for saying this, but unless it's an essay that will be marked or something as or even more important, why spend time worrying over it? I know I can write a well worded essay, with fancy words we usually only see in dictionaries (actually we don't even notice them in dictionaries), but when I'm typing stuff here, on my own blog, about my own, personal thoughts, shouldn't I just write what's coming into my head? Agreed, I need to make it comprehensible, but I'm just not going to fret over how there are so many million words in the world and I need to use so many of them? Well, it's a personal thought and others' views might differ.

It's MY choice how I choose to live. It's simple. And I love it that way. :)

God! See the exam magic? I've actually talked sense! Since a long time! Why doesn't this magic work with the exam subjects? We could actually get a lot less stressful then. And a lot more intelligent, since exam marks tell us how good we are, forgot? :P
Now I have a suspicious feeling that the green book's going to be upset with me. What if it doesn't let me read from it? I guess I better start, getting 'marks' is SO important! 

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Why exams are unfair!!

UNFAIR would be a universally-agreed-seven-star-rated understatement for these darned exams! They seem to be totally useless and pointless; unnecessarily a stupid burden on us poor kids, who have to sacrifice our otherwise normal-and-fun-filled life during exams and enter into a pathetically bored existence.

I fail to understand a single positive in the concept of exams. Okay, maybe everything would be disillusioned otherwise, there would be no means of evaluation and how would students get admitted to schools and colleges? I am mostly speaking of our Bharat's a.k.a. India's educational system, which is simply too much of a pain! I mean, even the texts in the super-fast-sleep-inducing-textbooks say 'India's Education System is faulty' (this was really a line in one of my books :/ ).

A few REAL reasons why such exams are unfair (and pointless, useless, and many more suitable 'less'es :P ):

1. Wrong criteria for judgment.
Tell me, how can anyone judge someone's capabilities and abilities through a two or three hour examination, where we pour out all magnanimous stuff we've literally crammed inside our small heads, peppered with a few fancy words coming out of our writing capabilities. (OK, agreed. They can measure intelligence, though only up to a limit, and limited to the measly subject). What if someone who's really knowledgeable, falls ill and is just able to write a few sentences? What if a moron decides to cheat from his blackberry and the unsuspecting invigilators don't notice, and he ends up topping the exam? It's just not fair. Not a single teeny weeny bit. 

2. The 'Image' behind the exam scores
I am still to find a sane student who wants to get a good score for philosophical stuff like 'personal satisfaction', 'self-achievement' or 'moral values'. All we want to ensure is that our self-respect or 'image' isn't  spoiled. We don't want to be perceived as failures or kids without any intellect. Is that the purpose for which exams were invented in the first place? I highly doubt that. 

3. They ruin our normal (and social) life anyway
That's the worst part! Tell your parents the dates of your exams and listen to the endless list of forbidden things! (that's a different story that we're experts at finding out loopholes). You're not allowed to read your novels, because you're supposed to read only incomprehensible textbooks! Forget that evening walk with the neighborhood friend, forget endless phone calls to friends (except to ask for the syllabus), forget social networking! (Not really, whatever happens, we can't leave Facebook, can we? :P ). To cut a long story really short, it's just not done. 

4. We're tagged for life.
However much people preach about exams not being the right criteria to judge an individual's intelligence, they WILL make an impression of you based on the results (it makes no difference if the topper doesn't have an iota of common sense). You get over 90% (really? kya khaate ho? :P ) and oh my gosh! You're a star! Relatives from all over the world croon over how well you do in studies (no matter if you're internally dying from lack of normal human activity); you get under 60% (again, really? You should study a lil bit!) you're a loser, you're told you're worthless. It doesn't matter if you're excelling at a sport or other activity. All this isn't right. It's even against the rules of nature!

5. The torturous invigilator

When we finally show up with our long, short, round et cetera kinds of noses (OK, poor joke; that's what happens during exams) buried in a thousand page bundle of notes, and are ready to sit for the paper, we're blessed with an invigilator who's sworn to make the experience worse than hell! (S)he'll keep on scolding the innocent students, reprimand them for shifting in their seats (don't they know everyone NEEDS to shift a bit? It's way uncomfortable otherwise), for moving their necks or eyes beyond 90 degrees in any direction! We're there trying to think of answers (OK, cook them up) and they won't even let us concentrate! :/

6. Exam results make phone bills shoot up to insane levels!
Remember how you were found stuck to the phone like a honey bee on a bee hive, with a scrunched up face, revealing to your friends how much you're scared of the 'marks' you'll achieve (or not achieve)? Or the time when you hunt for numerous phone numbers and call each of them to confirm the date and time of results? Or finally when you know the result, you're discussing it all with friends over the phone? If those are board exam results, you'll find a thousand phone calls from Pinky chachis or mamis (whom you don't even know), asking for your results? The net result (not the exam result, people!) being a hike in phone bills that could give an inferiority complex to a BPO!

I personally feel there was a guy who wanted a system to measure people's capabilities and had 'THE exam' idea, but his implementation went awfully off track and we have the result (not the exam result, tortured soul!). Or maybe he was just plain stupid. Anyway, thanks to that guy's invention, all mortals in this universe are suffering. 

Doesn't anyone see the shrunk faces, lost weights, disheveled looks and potentially dangerous stress levels? Why this thing at all? Recognize people for who they are, for the 'real' intelligence, rather than judging people on their ability to cram lines. No one lacks intelligence in this world. Everyone is just not able to put their academic intelligence on paper. 

But then, it doesn't matter, does it? Talented people always find a way to rise and shine, to prove themselves, to let the world know what they stand for. (That doesn't mean this post is useless. It took an incredibly long time, you better think about it! :P)

An end note to those rare species (if they exist) who read these posts seriously, however hard and pointless and frustrating (and many more similar adjectives) we find exams, the sad truth remains that we have to give them. So, while you're at it, study a bit. :P And think along the same lines as me if you're out of school and follow this if you're in a job and don't have to give exams! 

Tuesday, November 8, 2011


Snacking on my third bar of some really yummy chocolate (cherry ripe-that's what is written on the wrapper- it's well, cherry and coconut and dark chocolate!), I wonder what to write. There are a dozen topics buzzing around in my head, but I settle for one I've never written before.  

Ageing? Maturity? Seriousness? No way! These are still not 'my-kind' of topics!
It's Metamorphosis, meaning change. Before anyone starts thinking I've suddenly sprouted an interest in fancy words, let me clarify that I've been a fan of this word ever since I read it first time when I was 10, a poem by Anushka Ravishankar. A year ago, I came up with a poem (sachi mei! This is proof-  The Flight ). I wanted to title it 'Metamorphosis' but because of some (silly) reason, I didn't. So, here, finally it comes. :)

Have you ever tried to go way down the memory lane, flashback, and think of your life when you were really young? It's beautiful, soothing (unless you're focusing on embarrassing situations) and makes you appreciate the magic of change. That's what happened with me. The 'me' I am now is not the same as it used to be (I'm not counting my naughty nature and the tendency to land up in awkward situations!). There's been a gradual change, just like it happens with everybody.We're more confident now, more sensible, more intelligent.

But the thing I don't understand is the hype around your age. Does a teenager suddenly get super active maturity cells in them, so that the day they finish off their teens, they start behaving in a more 'sensible' manner? They now need to be more 'responsible' , 'understandable', 'capable' and many more ables. They do something stupid and get reprimanded for acting like a kid, for being 'immature'. Why? Change doesn't happen in a single day. Dear parents, or whoever elder to us, if you want youngsters to behave in such-and-such manner, make them inculcate those habits over a period of time. 

It's agitating! I found a half-written piece in the drafts folder on "Being 18". It had very similar thoughts. (My Mom just came up with an admonition, for being 'careless' with some ID cards. Hufff, whatever I may write or say, it just remains in the confines of this blog and to the hardly-couple-of-people who read this. If at all they read this. I have a suspicion they simply say it's nice because they don't want to discourage me. Will have to find out!!!). 

Anyway, the point is that yes, we are growing up, we need to be responsible; BUT we need TIME. It ain't a day magic (those Harry Potter spells don't work in reality! Neither do those Weasley ageing potions!). Cherish the growing up with youngsters. They love it and want to make you a part of it. Teachings and lessons can come progressively. And so can the reproofs. 

I've read a million quotes on 'life' but don't remember a single one at the mo. (maybe I do, but I don't want to stop this typing and think! :P ). I just know that Life's a beautiful gift and it is meant to be enjoyed, each moment. We get hindrances, tragedies, that make our life come at a stand-still; but we must make sure that those problems only cause the 'pause' mode in life. Be sure to find out a way (believe me, there are many) to get to the 'play' button and keep it there as long as possible. (this 'moving on' philosophy has been inspired by one of my friends :) ).
Okay, stop guessing! This intelligent thought came to me because sometimes I can actually think sense. Or maybe because I'm at the verge of the 'growing up' age. But believe me, nothing changes. At least not at once. I may have sounded sensible in this post, but it's the result of some deep thinking ONLY! I don't think I can ever get over my ability to sound like an idiot most of the times. :P
But still, now that I've typed down so much with just two of my fingers, I want to know what you think. (I'm  mostly addressing those 'hardly-couple-of-people', who will hopefully read this!). 

Signing off as a teen, for the last time ;)
(Miss you my bachpan! *sighs*)
Welcome 'maturehood'  (only saying for the benefit of those elder readers. They should not think we're not 'serious' :P )

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Am I the only one?

Yesterday while traveling in the Metro, I was engaged in my favorite pass time- thinking, about random things- when I realized that there are so many instances and dumb experiences I've undergone ever since I landed on this planet (OK, born. 'Landed' sounds much more fantastical ;) ). I've gathered up the nerve to post a few of such idiotic thoughts and instances, just to know if I'm the only weirdo that walked on Earth, or if there are some more of my clan (I really hope!), cleverly hiding their weirdness (which somehow, I find hard to conceal).
Some instances are too dumb to be posted for my own good.

Am I the only one, who...

1. Has taken upon herself to set the record for the 'most number of tripping over every single thing' and of 'making every fragile object fall, if handed'. I swear my parents would have spent more on repairing and getting new stuff than on the original things themselves.

2. Imagined herself as one of the PowerPuff girls (I was a small kiddo then!) and the other selfish, bullying kids as villains whom I can easily overpower and who would one day regret their behavior.(such is life. Those people still rule :/ )

3. Used to run outside excitedly at the sound of a marriage procession (baarat) and dance in the street (I'm horrified at what I did. I can't imagine doing it now!). Add to it taking up 'daring' challenges, like wearing a funny combination of clothes (example, wearing a tee inside out or worse, wearing one of our parents' clothes!) and taking a round in the street!

4. Got all excited at the prospect of school (this is way too old. I'm sure I didn't have any brains then). Oh yes! Making up rhyming pieces of poetry on my friends (and really rude ones on those who were mean. ;) )

5. Still likes to wipe the plate clean if it has some edible yummy stuff on it (It will continue. I'll always remain a die hard food fan!)

6. Has completely different views on how kids should be educated and if those views are voiced, it would definitely give some teachers or educationists a heart stroke!

7. Deliberately leaves some money in jeans' pockets. Considering the lack of short term memory, it is always a surprise when I find it later (and use it for a well deserved treat :P )

8. Likes to imagine normal innocent people walking down the roads as mechanical robots going about their daily monotonous routine (Really! Why don't people want any "fun"???)

9. Loves books more than any living person and believes that living in a secluded place entirely on books isn't really that tough. I would rather enjoy it, I think.

10. Somehow finds it funny when everyone is in a really serious mood and finds it hard to control her laughter when everyone else is quietly doing their job. (This has landed me in some embarrassing situations too :/ )

11. Likes to save new clothes for don't know what occasions, and end up not wearing them at all during the season :/

And finally!

12. Has a double life. The real one and an imaginary one (I like the imaginary life better). ;)

NOW, I want to know if there are more people who ever did or still do, such weird things? Or am I the only one? :)

PS- This is not me. I'm weirder! :P

Sunday, October 30, 2011

The normal "Me" and some exams!

The past so many days had been SO hectic and dominated by 'serious' issues in life, that I didn't get time to type down my usual typical teenager experiences and ended up posting on two sentimental and 'seriously important issues'. NOW I feel slightly stress-free, happy and in a really funny mood! Don't be surprised if I end up with the usual mordant posts every day! ;)

Like all other kiddos who, like me, are passing through the terrible career-choice-making-where-your-own-choices-don't-matter phase (okay, just kiddin'!) I gave the CAT* exam today; the exam dreaded by to-be-managers and business persons. Don't ask how it went. I'm just sharing the experience!

First of all, I don't even recall what made me choose this day for the exam. There are still 10 more days and I could easily have chosen any of those; but I guess I used too much of my marvelous intelligence and chose a day too soon. (Not that it matters anyway, but still. I could have avoided those amazed looks other kids gave me when I told them the date.). Add to it the time. I chose 10am knowing fully well that we are supposed to report an hour and a half before! For someone as lazy as me, it isn't an easy feat! 

So, the morning saw me entering the venue along with a hundred other kids (or maybe 200, who cares?), some showing a shameful amount of impetuosity (why be so excited about an exam???), some walking zombie-like straightforward and doing exactly as the authorities asked, some, the 'my-kind' of crowd, trying to suppress their yawns. There we were, the 100 (or 200) standing in a looong line, getting our IDs examined by a burly man who looked completely disinterested (I don't blame him. It must be such a boring task). After about half an hour, including getting our admit cards and IDs checked again (the guy asked me my name and DOB! As if I wouldn't know! To add to it, I caught Mom's eye, who was standing outside, and tried to hide my grin) we entered the dilapidated building. It was so filled with cobwebs on the outside and looked a million years old; I was hoping no one from a super healthy family would be allowed inside. What if the building collapsed? (Maybe that's too much, but still.)

Thankfully, it wasn't so bad from the inside! Our IDs were checked once again at the entrance (tell me, why in the whole million miles radii Earth, would anyone in their right minds want to gain secret entry to give an EXAM? Hudd ho gayi!). I was directed to the first floor, where another security guy asked for the admit card and ID. This time I couldn't help a smirk. Anyone would have found it funny. The security person looking at your ID proof, then looking up at you to see if it's the same person. I mean, it's all important and happens everywhere, but I found it silly AND funny. Coming round to another turn,  there was a security lady to check if we're carrying any personal belongings that we shouldn't; Boy, was I scared then! She was really daunting. No offense, but while she was checking, she kept murmuring something inaudible in a hoarse voice. I wondered if she was asking for a bribe or something, making a mental note to report her, when she finally said in a clear(still scary) voice "You don't have a phone with you, do you?". Relieved (and smacking myself mentally for my dramatic thinking) I shook my head and went ahead. (But yeah, I had to deposit my pen and the 'hanky' as they weren't allowed! LOL! :P)

Another guy, looked up the codes and stuff on the Admit card, directed me to another room. I was asked to sit in front of a camera in a computer operated by a sweet-looking lady. She took a picture, asked for finger prints from the first finger of both hands (which took a total of 30 attempts to match both the sides :P . I'm such a weirdo, even my fingerprints don't match easily!) and FINALLY, I was being escorted to my test room (the escorting service all the while was nice though, full points for that!). I was feeling I had given my exam already! It took so much time.

After another half hour of reading instructions, staring at the blank computer screen, getting our admit cards and IDs checked AGAIN and trying to assess other candidates from the corner of the eye, 10am arrived! The tutorial started and then the test. The next 140 minutes were spent with furious scribbling on the rough sheets, clicking and de-clicking on answers, reviewing and finally submitting the test. They still didn't let us go! We waited for another restless ten minutes, during the course of which a frightening man came into the room and simply stood there, sweeping his eyes over the kids, as if we're interested in anything more than getting out! Then they started calling candidates name wise, checking their Admit cards again (I decided then and there to tear it up later and gobble it down, in case someone comes knocking at my door later to see the card!) and we left in an orderly manner (SO unlike us kids, *sigh*).

I stepped outside and the first face I saw was my Mom's, which had everything to do with the BIG smile  that instantly spread across my face. Other kids' parents stood there too, with smiling and anxious faces, to receive them (Parents are the bestest thing God could gift children, I tell you.)

That moment was a happy one. As I trailed off the story (that had more info on the weird guys inside than on the exam!) I felt SO peaceful. Everything was good (my exam was too!).

So till the time my other "important" exams say hello, I'll be here posting stuff straight from my heart (just the way I like it ;) ); because, you guessed it, I have hardly 10 days to remain a teenager (*wailing loudly*). But hey, so what? It's the heart and spirit that counts. And THAT, I'm sure will always remain the same! :)

*CAT exam- Common Aptitude Test. An evaluation for some of the top-notch colleges and institutions for MBA.

And alright, all you smart, intelligent people! I know the reason for tight security is cheating and impersonation that might occur, but STILL! I found it humorous! :P

Friday, October 21, 2011

Love- it’s always worth it...

Digging into ancient folders that flooded my PC, I found this note I don't remember when I had written. I haven't edited it a single bit. Sometimes it gives an unmatched pleasure to read your own stuff, that was written a long time back. (I must have been in a really serious mood at that time. You'll know what I mean when you read it :) )

It seemed as if a cold trickle of water was sliding up my heart, boosting the energy. I couldn't help smiling. It felt so peaceful, serene and an exquisite unbounded joy without any material reason. That was one of the moments I had been pondering about. A feeling of pure happiness simply because of a person you like and admire for who they are.

Wherever we see, whatever we hear, we notice that people always seem to have a name for their relationship with someone. Someone is always somebody's friend, kid, husband/wife, boss, lover, a distant relation, senior, junior, etc. If ever we tried to take a while out of our lives, find out a secluded spot, sat in a cool breeze under the twinkling stars and thought about the relations we have, we would know that all feelings, emotions cannot be tagged under a name. There must be at least five hundred faces we can recognize- from our neighborhood, school, college, relations, while on the road, during trips, and such. Do we have a name for each of them? Certainly not. 

While these are people you have just been in contact for a short while, in some cases not even so, there are some who will leave a lasting impression on you, whether you know them personally or not. You will like them no matter what. It hardly makes any difference to you if people around you tell a different story about them or their character. You just know they are nice and you like them.

You have found a special person. That special person may be your best friend or even a distinct somebody you hardly ever talk to. In the latter case, there is no name for your relation. You are simply connected by a bond, a thread of emotions that bind you together. You have no particular reason to like them. You like them for who they are, for what they do, for how they behave. 
I would say, all feelings such as these can be summed up under the powerful force - LOVE. You love these people, your best friends, your family and those special people with whom you share an unbreakable bond, a bond strongly woven without any reason. For every thing in this world is NOT for a reason. Materialism exists just as far. 

The bottom line is - love people. There is no need to look for a reason to love. Let the inner force of feelings, love, happiness, emotions overpower you once in a while. It will leave you with nothing but happiness. 

Think about it. What is the reason that you love your sibling? Can’t answer? Then why look for reasons to love unknown people? If you do, you are limiting the amount of love you carry. An act of love for another can make someone’s day and may connect you for a lifetime.
Don’t we all know a person we hardly ever talk to, but like every thing about them? We simply love them- without a name, without a cause. Just straight from the heart.

PS- Take inspiration from the lyrics of the song - Need a Little Love by Miley Cyrus (yeah, I still remain a devoted Miley Cyrus fan).

Love- It's always worth it
Love- everyone deserves it
It's the friend that holds your hand
When nobody understands.

Love- it wants to heal you
Love- and see the real you
But you have to open up
When you need a little love....

PPS- The picture is one of my own clicks. :)

Monday, October 17, 2011

The “Greater” creatures – Homo sapiens

Life is beautiful, or at least, it is supposed to be. We’re incredibly lucky that God chose to bless our souls with a human form. We’re living a comfortable life, being educated, building plans for a great future, investing our time an vigour into ‘creation’ – creating things, inventions, innovations promising to make our life even better. We have the power of controlling our minds that make us ‘intelligent’. We can talk, create, build homes, and build lives. We have the power to do almost ANYTHING!

As a human being, you have ‘greater’ powers than other creatures; why don’t you try to make life better for them too, other than just your own? God didn’t put us here on this planet to meddle with his creations. We’re supposed to live, to use those resources carefully and make living an enjoyable experience, for us and all other living beings. (Don’t get me wrong, I’m not asking you to abandon cities and start living in the middle of a forest on wild fruits and leaves!)

Think about it, aren’t you only concerned about YOUR family, YOUR business, YOUR job, YOUR habits and also, YOUR choices? Do you even care how it is affecting others? However rigorously you may shake your head from side to side, showing those big bulging eyes, I know you don’t. Even if you do, there is some motive; you will be getting something out of it, wont you? Only a few great souls like the beloved Mother Teresa can provide selfless love.

And it isn’t only about humans.  A situation that arose recently in our colony made me think about what people’s priorities actually are. Everyone wants to stay in their comfortable cocoons, troubling to get out only to shoo away something that’s troubling them.

It had been THREE days since the street dog (a bitch) had been stuck underground. Weird, you say? Well, there was this small hole recently dug at the side of the ramp* of a neighbor’s house. This dog was about to give birth and had gone inside this seemingly ‘safe’ shelter. That’s because another dog, from another lane, had killed all her babies previously; kyunki ye patli si hai and wo moti and strong, as the littlest kids tell me. Clearly, tragedies aren’t only prevalent in our lives. These creatures suffer tragically and endure all the pain in their strong strides. It doesn’t mean they don’t have feelings. Have you ever noticed a tear in a dog’s eye? You should, you’ll start loving life more.

Anyway, the poor dog had gone deep inside and while coming out with the pups, one of its legs got stuck in the mesh of underground pipes! It wasn’t able to come out at all, and it was SO deep, no one could even see (except with a flashlight). A day passed, people gave pitying looks to the rock solid ramp, some staring, as if they had x-rays fixed in their retinas, to see or wonder what the dog’s condition would be. I saw the kids being the most affected. They stood in shock, listening to the wails, trying to figure out a way to help. The second day, someone called the MCD (Municipal Corporation of Delhi) and as it is expected in a funny city like Delhi, we got a huge, magnanimous Fire Ambulance instead. The fire truck came, saw the situation and said, “Ye hamara kaam nahin hai, MCD ko bulao” (this is not our job, call the MCD) or wait for two days, it might come out on its own; and went away! With nothing to do, the people went and slid back into their comfortable homes, while the dog with the pups was stuck inside with a painful leg, in a stifling, watery hole, without food or water, wailing loudly. Night came and the wailing stopped. One could hear people murmuring, “now they’ll have to break open the ramp anyway to get the smell and the dead dogs out, poor people, kharcha aa jaega inka toh” (they’ll have to pay for the expense). Heck, doesn’t anyone care at all? You felt bad because the owners of the home would have to pay, not because a life (and probably four more) had to end in such an inhuman manner? But wait, why would you, those creatures aren’t human, right? For heavens’ sake, didn’t you see its companion, sniffing all around frantically, wailing, and probably trying to call her? Why was it running around looking under cars or in the staircases? It isn’t just you, who has a life. Respect other lives; anything can happen with you too. I felt terrible. Even though I was always against my brother and dad feeding them with milk and bread occasionally, since they were always running around our gate, I felt a deep sadness seeing the poor companion. I wished I could have helped.

The next day I returned home from college, and to my delight and satisfaction, I heard the dog’s wailing! It was alive! Not wanting to miss this chance, I immediately set out, trying to talk with the home owners who wanted the dog out. They were compassionate people, thankfully and ensured their full support. The chowkidars were called in and asked to break open a part of the ramp, a little away from where it was stuck. An opening created, the people peeked in and saw the stuck dog in defensive mode, trying to struggle to keep her babies close. A dog in distress doesn’t know you’re trying to help; and angry and dissatisfied as it was, it was dangerous at that moment. We decided to call an animal shelter, which could free the dogs and take them for treatment. They came, made another opening, in the course of which one of the two guys got bitten by the dog. Angry and agitated with the situation, they went away after tying close the dog’s mouth, so it wouldn’t bite.

In the meanwhile, people started complaining about the racket that was being created by the dogs and the thump-thump of the hammers against cement. They wanted the dog out so that they could sleep in peace.  At last, a middle-aged woman, who had been helping with the process the whole time, called her husband from work to help. He came within half an hour and with a few tricks, made a comfortable way to slice the pipe, without the danger of the dog biting. There was this man in Reebok and Dockers, sawing away at the pipe in the heat, to save an animal’s life. Wasn’t it amazing? 

Finally, after whole six hours since the process started, the dog was free. Some people fed it with milk and went away satisfied. Some others didn’t bother; they continued living in their cocoons, trying to make more money probably. It was both a happy and sad moment for me. I felt extremely self-satisfied and happy. Hey, we prevented a small universe from being broken. The dog was alive, and so were its babies. But what hurt was the attitude of the residents, who didn’t really care. After all, it’s only a street dog, they say. I wanted to ask them, what if it was (God forbid) a little kid? People would have gone gaga over the issue and the kid would have been back with his doting mommy within half an hour!

The world isn’t just about you. Learn to love, show sympathy and extend a helping hand. The intense satisfaction and pleasure you experience would be much more than what you get sitting home watching the stupid TV. You are a ‘greater’ creature, show and prove it too. Help others. Love life. Live life.  

*ramp- a slope usually made of cement in front of a house.


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